Grief Journal: Thanksgiving

Our first Thanksgiving without him. 

To be honest, my son didn’t care much for Thanksgiving. A card-carrying member of the Picky Eater Club, there wasn’t much on the traditional Thanksgiving menu he liked—certainly not the turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, and gravy part. Rolls and carrots were about the extent of what he’d eat. 

What he did love was the fact of five entire “stay home” days with NO SCHOOL! He could sleep in, stay up later, play video games, and hang out. He was never as happy as when he was home in his pjs with the family. 

That was his favorite part of Thanksgiving—family. When I was going through his things, I found this picture:


His sense of humor is certainly obvious (his Poppy puns), but you can tell he really knows his subjects and that they matter to him (his brother’s slightly annoyed expression, his sister jumping into frame, my excited smile). He drew himself as an artist and creator, which he absolutely was. 

And in the picture, he’s surrounded and supported by his family, which he always was. 

We miss him more than I have words to say. And while I had much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, not least the love and support we continue to feel from our friends and family, I’d trade just about anything to have him back in the circle of our loving arms. To surround him again with the love and support we always tried to give him. To have that bright, shining soul at the center of our family. 

Because we feel the absence of his light. The circle of our family is not complete, and never again will be. It is a break that cannot and will never heal. We are still a family, but not the family in that picture.